Ruth Furnival has built the life she always dreamed of: a stellar career in television, a lovely home, a lawyer husband and two grown-up daughters. But at 54, with an empty nest and the menopause behind her, she feels restless and dissatisfied.
After multiple rounds of failed IVF, her elder daughter Lauren is told that the only way she and her husband can have a child of their own is through surrogacy. So when Ruth discovers that, with the right dose of hormones, she could carry their baby, they agree out of desperation.
At first Ruth is buoyed by a new sense of purpose, but as her pregnancy progresses, long-buried events from the past resurface. Meanwhile Lauren can’t contain her corrosive envy. Isolated and alone, Ruth starts to unravel and what began as an act of altruism turns into one of atonement – for which she’s willing to risk everything.
I’ll have to admit to psyching myself up for a novel that, due to the subject matter, maybe a difficult read and quite possibly emotionally draining. However, I was taken completely by surprise and found myself totally swept away in this superbly written story and devoured it page by page. The writing is immersive and the author handles this controversial subject with compassion and sensitivity. Utterly compelling this is a fast paced and brilliantly structured book that had me engrossed until the end. There is thread of tension running throughout the storyline that gives you a sense that things may not go as planned and I was in constant anticipation that everything may go horribly wrong.
The characters are brilliantly executed, they are described so well and we see the good and bad in all of them. The different character perspectives on the subject in hand is fascinating and with emotions running high the author captures their raw emotions, thoughts and feelings perfectly. Surrogacy had been really incredibly well researched and the information provided is interesting and educational.
A thought-provoking novel and I was constantly questioning if I could actually go through the same experience for a daughter. A brilliant and gripping debut novel that really resonated and struck a cord with me. I absolutely loved the whole execution of this story and seeing it all unfold.
Publication Date (UK): 1 April 2021
Page Count: 384
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Thank you to the publisher for the lovely advanced copy of this book to review.
Please do not hesitate to comment below if you liked my review or have any comments about this book 😊